- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 27, 2001

Georgetown should change its pregame warmup tune to Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust."

Last night before 5,077 at MCI Center, Georgetown dispatched another patsy but lost two more players to injury or illness.

Even without the services of leading scorer Mike Sweetney, who sat out with an aggravated left Achilles', the 18th-ranked Hoyas routed Grambling State 103-69. But the victory was not without sacrifices, as high-profile freshman forward Harvey Thomas went down in the first half with a sprained left ankle and junior forward Courtland Freeman was slowed with what coach Craig Esherick described as a "virus." The team is hoping Freeman's illness isn't another case of mono, which has already claimed promising freshman Tony Bethel for four to six weeks.

"Don't think that hasn't crossed my mind," said Esherick, obviously frustrated by his team's spate of health issues.

The Hoyas (4-1) will have a limited practice today before another early-season cream puff rolls into McDonough Arena tomorrow night in the form of Bethune-Cookman.

Despite the growing gaps in the Georgetown roster, the Hoyas played one of their most balanced games of the season against the Tigers (1-3). On the interior, starting center Wesley Wilson emerged to enjoy a career night in Sweetney's absence. The 6-foot-11, 235 pound junior from Vallejo, Calif., tossed in 23 points and collected 13 rebounds to lead all players in both categories.

Wilson was absolutely dominant in the post, hitting eight of his 12 shots from the field and setting innumerable screens that allowed his teammates to slide past him for easy, slashing scores. Wilson, who did most of his damage with a sweet turnaround jumper and an unblockable jump-hook, also thundered home a jam with a Grambling player clinging to his back to provide the game's defining moment. The slam gave Georgetown a 65-33 lead with 16:18 remaining that was never challenged by the lowly Tigers.

"Without 'Big Mike' to help me inside, I got tired at times. But we needed an inside presence, and I did my best to give us one," said Wilson.

Wilson was aided in the frontcourt by strong efforts from the ill Freeman and junior forward Victor Samnick, who also both recorded double-doubles as the Hoyas pitched in to fill the void created by the injury to Sweetney, who averaged 19.5 points and 9.5 rebounds in Georgetown's first four games.

"I want Mike back in the lineup as soon as possible because he's such a great player," said senior point man Kevin Braswell, who torched the Tigers for 20 points in just 24 minutes. "But until he gets back we're going to need more big games from Wes and Courtland and Victor. Wes was great tonight. We needed him to show up big and stand in the gap, and he did just that."

Thomas, who is unlikely to miss more than one game, went down midway through the first half trying to earn his third steal in just eight minutes of playing time.

"Let's see, the good news is we have seven guys who can practice tomorrow," said Esherick. "Mike Sweetney is day-to-day with an Achilles'. Harvey is out of tomorrow's practice with a sprained ankle. Trenton [Hillier] is still out from an injury he suffered in his last football game. And Courtland has a virus, and he won't practice tomorrow either. It's like two years ago when we practiced with seven guys, had managers dressed and even coaches scrimmaging."


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